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Old 05-21-2008, 05:52 PM   #1
ColdSun
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HP IPAQ 210/211 4" VGA - Ebook Reading?

So I've been looking for a newer LCD device to read on. After spending quite some time on it, I came across the HP hx4700 4" PPC. There are plenty for sale on ebay. It can play movies, MP3s, games, surf the web and also read ebooks. So I think this is the perfect device for me.

Now I hear that HP has a new model. The IPAQ 210/211 (same thing depending on the market you buy it in I guess).

http://www.shopping.hp.com/product/h...B041AA%2523ABA

Its a little pricey, but no more so than a Kindle (which I don't want due to no backlight and no web surfing).

I read that this new version has a better battery (saw it in a review). I don't mind charging it every night or every other night. Seems like it lasts at least that long or longer for reading only (with wireless off).

How does everyone else feel about it? Anyone else have one of these or the hx4700? Is a used hx4700 just as good?
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Old 05-21-2008, 06:00 PM   #2
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I recently upgraded from an hx4700 to the 210. For ebooks either one is a great choice. The 4" screen with Cleartype fonts is very easy on the eyes. It's nice to be able to read in bed without keeping my wife up (thanks to the backlight).

The 210, though, has a few advantages for ebooks. The d-pad is much easier to use than the hx4700 touchpad. The 210 has more memory and built-in memory. The 210 supports SDHC memory cards (SD Cards 4GB and above). My laptop has an SD card reader built in, so I find it very handy to use SD cards. Having a fast 16GB card has been great (even if my ebook library is "only" 1GB).

In general there are some other differences. The 210 has a newer processor which is much better at playing back video files (if you care about that sort of thing). The 210 has a 20% larger battery. The 210 is also a shipping product, so it is possible to get warranty service on.
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Old 05-21-2008, 06:39 PM   #3
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Thank you so much.

Is the pad on the 4700 that bad? I'm not going to watch any movies on this thing at all. The battery life is sufficient too. Does it make turning pages too difficult?

Last edited by ColdSun; 05-21-2008 at 07:40 PM.
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Old 05-22-2008, 07:25 AM   #4
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I read on a 4700 for several years. It's good (although not even in the same ballpark as the eInk devices I now prefer). I found that the touchpad worked very well indeed. With the standard battery, you get a reading life of perhaps 10h - I used to recharge mine every 3-4 days. The screen is excellent, and has a variable brightness backlight that you can adjust to suit the lighting conditions.

Very good device.
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Old 05-22-2008, 07:02 PM   #5
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Thanks HarryT. I'm getting one of these for Father's Day!
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Old 05-23-2008, 03:51 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdSun View Post
Is the pad on the 4700 that bad?
It's probably preference more than anything. What I don't like about the 4700 is the lack of tactile feedback. You don't feel anything when you've hit the "button". Often you didn't but when the screen doesn't respond right away (which happens occasionally) you're not sure if you hit the button or not. So you hit it again, except you did hit it the first time, so now you've hit it twice... anyway, hopefully you get the idea. I found it excessively frustrating. I disabled the touchpad entirely and re-mapped the application buttons to turn the pages instead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
It's good (although not even in the same ballpark as the eInk devices I now prefer).
That's DEFINITELY preference. I prefer a backlight and color on a device that can actually view web pages reasonably well. To each his own I guess.

The battery life is probably fine either way. One thing though: the 4700 is better for zero backlight viewing in sunlight than the 210. The 210 does OK in daylight, but you have to turn the backlight all the way up. If you plan on reading outdoors frequently this might be a consideration in favor of the hx4700.
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Old 05-23-2008, 03:59 AM   #7
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The 4700 has a "transflective" LCD screen which is excellent in full sunlight.
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Old 05-24-2008, 02:53 AM   #8
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My hx4700 is on the way. I got a bunch of extras with it too.
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Old 06-10-2008, 11:36 AM   #9
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My hx4700 is on the way. I got a bunch of extras with it too.
Hey ColdSun,
Let us know how the hx4700 is working out as an ereader. I considered purchasing one from ebay but the 4" screen seemed a bit small. I'm curious to find out if you are enjoying your new ebook reader
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Old 06-10-2008, 01:14 PM   #10
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I am currently using a 4700 as my main ereader, but Harry's comments in these forums have convinced me to buy a Cybook. Hopefully, I'll have one by summer's end. Still, the 4700 has done a great job for me. I got the extended life battery and keep a battery charging all the time.

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Old 06-11-2008, 02:22 AM   #11
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The 4700 So Far

Well, I know some of you might be interested in what I think of my 4700 so far.

The screen is beautiful. Compared to my Ebookwise-1150 it is so much more clear. The screen itself isn't too small - I was a little concerned with that. The battery life is actually pretty darn good, although not as good as an 1150 of course, it lasts me days without a recharge, depending on how much I read. I can plug it right into the base and it charges right up pretty quickly.

There are some advantages of its size. I feel much more comfortable carrying it around with me to the movies and stuff. The leather case I received with it is very nice. At the same time, the size took a little getting used to while reading in bed. It is a little more difficult to hold and turn pages than with my 1150.

I have to confirm issues with the touchpad thingy though. I've slipped and lost my page quite a few times and it can be very annoying because the direction pad is so touchy. I did the same as the fellow above mentioned and mapped the next/previous buttons to other buttons than the direction pad because I often found myself skipping pages just by pressing for a second too lock and not having any tactile feedback. The other buttons eliminate this problem quite well. They click when you press them and I've yet to go to more than one page at a time like with the direction pad.

I've got Windows Mobile 6 on the unit and it seems to be working just fine. I can surf the web quite easily as well as read books. As you can imagine, turning the wireless feature on drains the battery faster.

So far I do like this much more than my ebookwise-1150. I would still LOVE to have an LCD device with backlight about the size of my 1150 with newer technology, wireless, etc. This seems to be the closest I will get until manufacturers realize that e-Ink isn't the ONLY technology out there for us readers.

There is only 1 huge problem that I have that has annoyed me greatly. For some reason, when I slide it in the leather case, or pick the unit up by a certain spot, the battery lock switch moves over to the unlock position and basically "soft boots" the unit. I don't lose my place in the book, but I have to restart Mobipocket because the OS on the device has rebooted due to the battery disconnect. There is a backup battery that keeps the memory in the device (which is why I don't lose any settings or my current place in books), but if I one day hit the switch by accident and it does this without me knowing it, I could come back to a completely drained backup battery with certain settings lost (all my books are on my CF card).

I've also got 2 memory cards in it. A 2GB SD card and an 8GB CF card. Both of them were very affordable. I've heard you can put as much as a 16GB CF card in, and a 4GB SD card (NOT SDHC - it will NOT take SDHC - be sure you know that if you get one of these and want an SD card. Most on the market 4GB and above are SDHC, so you have to look around for non-HC versions).

I'll keep you updated as I do more with it. Just so you know, I have the ebookwise 1150, the Nokia 770 Internet Tablet, a DT-375 Web Tablet and a Tungsten-E Palm. I would never have replaced my Nokia N770 if they hadn't completely dropped support and development on the device like 1 month after I bought it. The last OS update was 2006, and they have released 2 newer versions of the internet tablet. There are major differences so you can't just upgrade to the newer software the N800 or N810 use without using a hacked version that is severely lacking features. Anyhow, I'll never buy a Nokia product again.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdSun View Post
I have to confirm issues with the touchpad thingy though. I've slipped and lost my page quite a few times and it can be very annoying because the direction pad is so touchy. I did the same as the fellow above mentioned and mapped the next/previous buttons to other buttons than the direction pad because I often found myself skipping pages just by pressing for a second too lock and not having any tactile feedback. The other buttons eliminate this problem quite well. They click when you press them and I've yet to go to more than one page at a time like with the direction pad.
One trick that may help is to move the Trackpad sensitivity slider all the way to the right (least sensitive). This helps reduce accidental presses. I still found it too annoying and disabled the trackpad entirely using Tweaks2K2.

Quote:
There is only 1 huge problem that I have that has annoyed me greatly. For some reason, when I slide it in the leather case, or pick the unit up by a certain spot, the battery lock switch moves over to the unlock position and basically "soft boots" the unit. I don't lose my place in the book, but I have to restart Mobipocket because the OS on the device has rebooted due to the battery disconnect. There is a backup battery that keeps the memory in the device (which is why I don't lose any settings or my current place in books), but if I one day hit the switch by accident and it does this without me knowing it, I could come back to a completely drained backup battery with certain settings lost (all my books are on my CF card).
I've certainly experienced this from time to time. Your issue sounds much more frequent, though. Perhaps your battery latch is worn down some from use making it easier to accidentally open.
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Old 06-13-2008, 01:55 PM   #13
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I guess it's a personal thing. For me, the touchpad is one of the key features which differentiates the 4700 from other Pocket PCs. I really like it, and haven't have any issues with it at all!
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Old 08-27-2008, 10:50 PM   #14
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I've been leaning strongly towards the HP 211 as a PDA, movie player, and eBook Reader. (I travel a lot, and a supply of reading material is a pain to bring along.)

Recently, I called an HP chatline, and tried to find out how the device would do as an eBook reader. The fellow there put me on hold and after a bit came back and recommended that I check Handango for a reader application that might work.

So ... does this device support eBooks or would I have to get an application and figure out how to load it? I'm really hoping that the Chat Dude had no idea what he was saying. Thanks!
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Old 08-28-2008, 12:31 AM   #15
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I've had my 210 (I think the number varies slightly according to who you buy it from) for a few months now. I love it.

I had a 4700 and I think this is better. The touchpad often drove me nuts.

I have eReader, mobipocket and microsoft reader on my 210. They all work. I didn't try to register microsoft reader as they said my last ppc (2790) was too old. So instead I just use convertLIT and all my books work.

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